Ask most security experts and they’ll tell you that their number one rule for phone calls is that unless the caller is a saved contact in your phone, don’t answer.
Hackers use many tricks to attempt to record your voice or lure you to answer certain questions, through a phone call. Instead, allow unknown callers to leave a message and you decide if you want — or need — to call back.
Cyber Tip 1: Don’t answer the phone unless you know the number
If you aren’t among the curious few who already do this regularly, Google your name every now and then to see what the world knows about you.
You may be surprised at the amount of information about you. Don’t look only at the first page of search results — look through several pages to see what is known about you.
Cyber Tip 2: Google yourself, and know what others know about you
Google your name along with a keyword. For example, search for your name and your employer or school, and see the list of things that you either have participated in or have been identified with, as well as what someone else has shared about you.
Hackers use this information to figure out things about you. This way, they can use targeted attacks to gain access to your personal information.
Here is an example:
Let’s say you are listed as a Xerox employee on your LinkedIn profile. With very little research, a hacker can figure out when the Xerox benefits open enrollment occurs.
With that information, they may target you during the company’s open enrollment period with phone calls or email, asking you to log into seemingly harmless sites.
If you are not careful, you may enter the wrong site and submit your secure credentials.
Keep the hackers at bay.
(This article was originally published in Small Business Solutions, a Xerox blog that helps you get the most out of your office technology, and provides tips on digital marketing, cost reduction, IT security and increasing productivity.)